The former First Lady presented an award with her namesake, the Rosalynn Carter Leadership in Caregiver Award, to Rush University Medical Center’s Community Caregiving Outcomes Alliance (CoCOA).

Rush University Medical Center receives Rosalynn Carter Leadership in Caregiving Award

AMERICUS (Nov. 16, 2011)--Last month during the Rosalynn Carter Institute for Caregiving zRCI_logo(RCI) Gala, the former First Lady presented an award with her namesake, the Rosalynn Carter Leadership in Caregiver Award, to Rush University Medical Center’s Community Caregiving Outcomes Alliance (CoCOA).

The CoCOA is a partnership between the Rush Older Adult Programs and Rush University College of Nursing in Chicago, Ill. This award recognizes leadership in implementing innovative partnerships between community agencies and caregiving researchers, bridging the gap between science and practice.

“Collaboration and partnerships are at the core of our alliance,” said Rush’s Carol J. Farran, RN. “We identify the entire spectrum of care and services available, and provide older adults and their families with the ways to ways to resolve unmet needs.”

Farran is a professor, and the Nurses Alumni Association Chair in Health and the Aging Process at the Rush College of Nursing. Golden is director of the Older Adult Programs at Rush University Medical Center.

The CoCOA was chosen by the Rosalynn Carter Institute for Caregiving for clearly demonstrating the following:

  • Dedication to developing effective evidence-based caregiver interventions that improve the health and well-being of caregivers
  • Collaboration and partnerships between all stakeholders in the caregiving process
  • Potential for developing or more effectively using financial, educational and human resources to support caregivers
  • Effective reach into the target population
  • Potential to serve as a model for other individuals, groups, organizations or communities in efforts to better support caregivers

The alliance develops innovative programs to address the needs of caregivers of older adults by nurturing partnerships among researchers, Chicago community agencies and caregivers.

In 2007, the CoCOA developed the Enhanced Discharge Planning Program (EDPP) where social workers provide transitional care and support to patients and caregivers. This innovative program significantly decreased patient readmissions.

“The result of this alliance is that we have significantly decreased patient readmissions,” said Rush’s Robyn L. Golden. “There are several sites across the country currently replicating our initiatives.”

Members of the CoCOA on hand to receive the award were Farran, Golden, Walter Rosenburg and Judith McCann.

Johnson & Johnson generously sponsors this award each year with a $20,000 stipend and a statuette designed by renowned sculptor Frank Eliscu, designer of the Heisman Trophy.

- GSW -

Georgia Southwestern’s Rosalynn Carter Institute for Caregiving was created in 1987 in honor of former First Lady and GSW alumna Rosalynn Carter. Through research, education and training, the RCI promotes the mental health and well being of individuals, families and professional caregivers; encourages effective caregiving practices; builds public awareness of caregiving needs; and advances public and social policies that enhance caring communities.